Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Oooh, senator...

Well, the US Senate has declined to vote on appointing John Bolton as UN Ambassador, again. The deal with ambsaadorial appointments is that the President nominates/appoints and then the Senate (the undemocratic house, that wasn't directly elected until the 1890's) approves. Since their active assent is required, simply leaving the matter to languish without voting directly on the appointment will suffice to block.

It's worth noting, some of the yankander blogs I've on this seem very keen to defend the independence of the senate, and also the qualified majority for anti-fillibuster motions.

This isn't, though, what moves me to write about the senate. Apparently, the DeLeonist New Union Party are going to contest for a Senatorial Seat in Minnesotta (they also have a website here and this is the Wikipedia write-up).

The draft programme made clever use of a new term Working Democracy which encompases both functionality as well as class/workplace connotations (i.e. as opposed to workers democracy, or workers power, working class democracy, workplace democracy, you see the trend).

The main thing with the New Union Party, aside from a DeLeonist programme for one big union of the workers backed by the political sheild of the party making a revolution, is to moderate the language - their programme doesn't name itself socialist, dosn't talk about the eliminatioon of the market (indeed, it sounds more like co-operativist capiatalism, as some worker's councillists sometimes end up advocating).

Sadly, also, they seem to have picked up a Christian who inserts religious comments into the text - e.g. the Bible says Money is the root of all evil, etc. The DeLeonists take a liberal stance on religion, saying it is a personal matter, and allowing the religious to join. Inserting religious epithets into political tracts, though, is capitulating to the christian political movement in America, and going without secularism - the last issue of their journal even included a Christian case for Socialism.

I wish them luck, but it does strike me that in trying to escape bureucratism of the the Socialist Labor Party and dogmatism, they have made the mistakes of losing clarity and position.


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